The Iranian regime’s true character
Posted: 19 Jun 2009 04:05 PM PDT
“Regimes and governments that remain in power through force or threat of force, can’t be engaged as if they understand reason or doing the right thing. One doesn’t have to go way over to Iran to see this. There are an abundance of sheer “Helter Skelter” governments around here-that rather be in power and shove their thing down the people’s throat-rather than doing what the people want.”
by VOICES for REASON: Are We in League with Iran?
Behind the Western push to “engage” Iran diplomatically there lies a major lie. It’s the idea that whatever conflict we have with the regime can be resolved through “engagement,” since Tehran is open to persuasion and we share much common ground.
On this view, Iran is thought to be concerned with the welfare of its people; after all, it claims to want nuclear technology to light up the homes and shops of its citizens. Evidence refuting this quasi-favorable view of Teheran is abundant and accessible in open sources.
Now, in its response to street demonstrations challenging the outcome of Iran’s elections, we’ve seen another illustration of what the Iranian regime is really like.
Does a regime concerned with the lives of its own citizens operate vigilante forces to intimidate and kill protesters? Does it issue not-so-veiled threats of a massive purge if protests continue? Does it shut down access to the Internet and muzzle the foreign press?
And let’s not forget that there’s no such thing as a genuine election in Iran. Even leaving aside the (probably true) allegations of vote rigging, under the Islamist regime the clerics disqualify countless candidates and handpick who can even run. Nor does it matter a great deal who wins, in the end, since it is the religious Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, who wields ultimate control, not the “elected” president.
One positive result that may, possibly, come out of the protests and the high-profile press coverage is that more people in the West will rethink their assumptions — or stop fooling themselves — about what kind of regime we’re dealing with.